Circle MRT Line

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Not to be confused with MRT Circle Line.
Circle MRT Line
Laluan MRT Bulatan
இணைப்பு எம்ஆர்டி வழி
MRT map CC.svg
The Circle Line is coloured yellow on system maps.
Type Rapid transit
System Mass Rapid Transit (Singapore)
Status Operational
Termini Dhoby Ghaut
Marina Bay
Stations 30 (excluding Bukit Brown)
Services 3
Opening 28 May 2009 (Stage 3)
17 April 2010 (Stage 1 and 2)
8 October 2011 (Stage 4 and 5)
14 January 2012 (Circle Line Extension)
2025 (Stage 6)
Owner Land Transport Authority
Operator(s) SMRT Trains (SMRT Corporation)
Character Fully Underground
Depot(s) Kim Chuan
Rolling stock Alstom Metropolis C830
Alstom Metropolis C830C
Line length 35.7 km (22.2 mi)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Electrification 750 V DC third rail
Operating speed limit of 78 km/h
Route map
 Jurong East 
HarbourFront – Punggol
CC1 Dhoby Ghaut
CC2 Bras Basah
CC3 Esplanade
CE2 Marina Bay
CE1 Bayfront
CC4 Promenade
Bukit Panjang
CC5 Nicoll Highway
Kallang Basin
CC6 Stadium
CC7 Mountbatten
CC8 Dakota
Geylang River
CC9 Paya Lebar
Pasir Ris – Joo Koon
Pan Island Expressway
Kallang–Paya Lebar Expressway
CC10 MacPherson
Expo – Bukit Panjang
CC11 Tai Seng
Kim Chuan Depot
CC12 Bartley
Punggol – HarbourFront
CC13 Serangoon
CC14 Lorong Chuan
Central Expressway
CC15 Bishan
Jurong East – Marina South Pier
CC16 Marymount
CC17 Caldecott
CC18 Bukit Brown
Pan Island Expressway
Bukit Panjang – Expo
CC19 Botanic Gardens
CC20 Farrer Road
CC21 Holland Village
Joo Koon – Pasir Ris
CC22 Buona Vista
CC23 one-north
Ayer Rajah Expressway
CC24 Kent Ridge
CC25 Haw Par Villa
CC26 Pasir Panjang
CC27 Labrador Park
CC28 Telok Blangah
CC29 HarbourFront

The Circle Line (CCL) is Singapore's fourth Mass Rapid Transit line. This underground line is 35.7 kilometres (22.2 mi) long with 30 stations (excluding Bukit Brown) and is fully automatically operated.[1] It takes about one hour to travel from one end to the other. The line is coloured yellow in the rail map.

As the name implies, the line is an orbital circle route linking all radial routes leading to the city. It also covers many parts of the Central Area. From Promenade, the line branches with one branch terminating at Dhoby Ghaut and the other terminating at Marina Bay. Transfers to the North South Line are provided at Bishan, Dhoby Ghaut and Marina Bay, East West Line at Paya Lebar and Buona Vista, and North East Line at Dhoby Ghaut, Serangoon and HarbourFront. The Downtown Line interchanges with the Circle Line at Bayfront and Promenade and future sections of the Downtown Line will interchange at Botanic Gardens and MacPherson. The future Thomson-East Coast Line will interchange with the Circle Line at Caldecott and Marina Bay.

The Circle Line is the first medium capacity line in Singapore. As a medium capacity line, each Circle Line train has only three cars instead of the six-car configuration as seen on current MRT lines. Half a million people are expected to use the Circle Line each day. The line reduces travelling time for commuters by allowing them to shorten trips between north to east or north to west and vice versa, bypassing busy interchange like City Hall and Raffles Place.

On 8 October 2011, the Circle Line became fully operational to commemorate its operator SMRT's 24th Anniversary for Rail Services since the company's establishment in 1987.


Plans for the Circle Line date back to the 1980s. The then Minister for Communications and Information, Dr Yeo Ning Hong stated that such a system "would be feasible when the population reaches four million."[citation needed]

The Circle Line was first known as the Marina Line in May 1998. The Marina Line was initially planned as a 12-station underground line, starting from Chinatown and Dhoby Ghaut via the National Stadium to either Kallang or Paya Lebar station.[citation needed] However, the Chinatown leg was later truncated and was reduced to 6 stations up to Stadium station. On the other hand, a further extension towards Upper Paya Lebar was added in the year 2000. The Marina Line was also merged with a LRT line that goes from Paya Lebar to Buona Vista via Serangoon and Bishan to form Circle Line Stage 3 and 4 in 2001. Stations in Circle Line that were a part of the original Marina Line plans include Dhoby Ghaut, Bras Basah, Esplanade, Promenade, Nicoll Highway and Stadium. Also, the part of the Marina Line from Chinatown to Promenade is now part of the Downtown Line.

Construction started in 2002, and was supposed to be opened from 2006 and fully opened in 2010, with an estimated cost of S$6.7 billion, the Nicoll Highway collapse caused the construction of the Circle Line to be delayed to open from 28 May 2009 (the Stage 3 of which it is not affected by Nicoll Highway collapse), with full opening on 8 October 2011, at an escalated cost of nearly S$10 billion.[2] Due to the re-alignment of the Nicoll Highway Station to a new location, the station is only two-thirds the size of the original plan before the collapse, and located 100 metres (330 ft) away from the highway collapse site.[3] The decision was also made to open both Caldecott, and Haw Par Villa stations (previously Thomson and West Coast), as a normal stations leaving the Bukit Brown MRT Station closed, and there is only a middle track and emergency escape shaft.

View of underground platform at Bishan Station of the Circle Line from ground level during construction.

Stage 3, a 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) five-station segment stretching from Bartley to Marymount, was the first section of the line opened, on May 28, 2009. Initial ridership on this section was lower than estimated, at 32,000 passengers per day (ppd) instead of the estimated 55,000 ppd.[4] Tunneling works for the entire line were completed on August 17, 2009.[5] Stages 1 and 2 started operations on April 17, 2010,[6] Stages 4 and 5 on October 8, 2011,[7] and the final Circle Line Extension on January 14, 2012. The line was also fully completed in October 2011, to commemorate operator SMRT's 24th anniversary.

one-north Station on the Circle Line.

On 17 January 2013, the Land Transport Authority announced 'Circle Line Stage 6' which will close the circle, running between Marina Bay and HarbourFront via Keppel Port, Cantonment and Marina Coastal stations, closing the final stage of the Tanjong Pagar central business district. It will be a 4 km extension.[8] The station locations for 'Circle Line Stage 6' will be annouced in 2015. Tenders will be called for construction in 2016 and demolition, diversion and utility works will commence in 2017. Construction of the line will begin in earnest in 2018 and it is due for completion in 2025.


Nicoll Highway collapse[edit]

On 20 April 2004, a section of the tunnel being built for the Circle Line collapsed, apparently when a retaining wall used in the tunnel's construction gave way. This occurred near what was planned to become the Nicoll Highway Station on the Circle line, not far from the Merdeka Bridge. The accident left a collapse zone 150 metres (490 ft) wide, 100 metres (330 ft) long, and 30 metres (98 ft) deep. Four workers were killed, with three more injured.

A criminal inquiry found the main contractor Nishimatsu Construction Company and joint venture partner firm Lum Chang Construction Company and their officers, as well as key Land Transport Authority officers responsible for the collapse. Several other officers and subcontractors were reprimanded and issued warnings in connection with the accident.

As a result of this accident, the first phase of the Circle Line, previously scheduled to open in 2008, was completed in 2010 instead. The affected station has been shifted about 100 metres (330 ft) away from the accident site and is now located at Republic Avenue.

This accident had also resulted in stricter safety regulations for the construction of all future MRT lines. The shifting of the Nicoll Highway Station also meant it can no longer serve as a terminus for the Bukit Timah Line, partially influencing the creation of the current Downtown Line.

Other incidents[edit]

On 16 August 2007, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) issued a stop-work order and revoked the contractor's tunnelling permit after a 7 metres (23 ft) stretch of two lanes sank about 20 centimetres (7.9 in), close to the junction of Telok Blangah Road and Alexandra Road in the evening, resulting in a halting of tunnelling works.[9]

A section of the road above a construction site near Holland Road caved in on the morning of 24 May 2008, creating a massive hole. The hole, directly in front of two private houses along Cornwall Gardens Road, measured 8 by 7 metres and was 3 metres deep. No one was injured, but the road was temporarily closed to traffic.[10]

Line disruptions[edit]

On 20 September 2011, a power fault disrupted train services on all 16 stations on the Circle Line. The four hours delay left thousands of commuters stranded during rush-hour. It was reported that leaks and a damaged cable along the Circle Line were the caused of the disruption.[11] The disruption started at about 5.30 am. Train services were gradually restored from 8am and all services were restored just before 10am. Dakota and Mountbatten stations were the last two to resume operations.[12] Investigations were carried out. It was later found that a faulty cable beneath the platform level at Dakota Station caused a power fault on Tuesday morning that affected train services at all 16 stations on the Circle Line.[13] 27,000 passengers were affected by the disruption during the four hours delay, with bus bridging services plying the Circle Line route.[14]


Alstom Metropolis C830 rolling stock for the Circle Line parked in the depot.
The current map of the Circle Line shown on top of the train doors before the opening of Downtown Line.
Interior of CCL MRT Alstom Metropolis C830 train

This route goes between:
Dhoby Ghaut - HarbourFront
Marina Bay - Stadium

Station Number Station Name Interchange/Notes
 CC1  NS24  NE6  Dhoby Ghaut Change to North South Line and North East Line
 CC2  Bras Basah  
 CC3  Esplanade  
 CC4  DT15  Promenade Change to Downtown Line
 CC5  Nicoll Highway  
 CC6  Stadium Marina Bay shuttle terminus during off-peak hours
 CC7  Mountbatten
 CC8  Dakota  
 CC9  EW8  Paya Lebar Change to East West Line
 CC10  DT26  MacPherson Change to Downtown Line (under construction)
 CC11  Tai Seng  
 CC12  Bartley  
 CC13  NE12  Serangoon Change to North East Line
 CC14  Lorong Chuan  
 CC15  NS17  Bishan Change to North South Line
 CC16  Marymount  
 CC17  TE9  Caldecott Change to Thomson-East Coast Line (under construction)
 CC18  Bukit Brown (Reserved for Future Use)
 CC19  DT9  Botanic Gardens Change to Downtown Line (under construction)
 CC20  Farrer Road  
 CC21  Holland Village  
 CC22  EW21  Buona Vista Change to East West Line
 CC23  one-north  
 CC24  Kent Ridge  
 CC25  Haw Par Villa  
 CC26  Pasir Panjang  
 CC27  Labrador Park  
 CC28  Telok Blangah  
 CC29  NE1  HarbourFront Change to North East Line
Circle Line Extension
 CE1  DT16  Bayfront Change to Downtown Line
 CE2  NS27  TE20  Marina Bay Change to North South Line and Thomson-East Coast Line

Rolling stock[edit]

The rolling stock consists of 40[15] Alstom Metropolis C830 trains[16] running in three-car formation. They are stabled at Kim Chuan depot, the world's largest underground depot.[citation needed] 24 additional Alstom Metropolis C830C trains has started delivery from end July 2014.[17][18]

Train Control[edit]

The Circle Line is equipped with Alstom's Urbalis 300 signalling system with MASTRIA strategy which uses automatic moving-block technology with two-way digital transmission with Automatic Train Protection(ATP) to eliminate the risks of collisions and derailments. The Automatic Train Operation System (ATO) which drives the train and Train Data Management System (TDMS) to concentrate and dispatch the rolling stock information with fixed equipment. A Waveguide information network has the capability to transmit video and is almost maintenance-free. Base stations are located within the signalling equipment room. Automatic platform screen doors supplied by Westinghouse provide safety for passengers, offering protection from arriving and departing trains.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "ALSTOM chosen for the world’s longest fully automated metro line in Singapore". 2002-02-20. 
  2. ^ Circle Line could cost taxpayers $10 billion
  3. ^ "Circle Line will exceed $6.7b budget" Christopher Tan, The Straits Times, 15 September 2007
  4. ^ LTA completes final tunnelling work on Circle Line – Channel NewsAsia
  5. ^ Breaking News | The Straits Times
  6. ^
  7. ^ Train crowding to ease with launch of full Circle Line: Minister Lui | SingaporeScene – Yahoo! News Singapore
  9. ^ "Stop-work order at Telok Blangah site is fourth this year on $6.7b MRT project" T. Rajan, The Straits Times, 22 August 2007
  10. ^ "Road above Circle Line construction site caves in" CNA Live, Channel NewsAsia, 24 May 2008
  11. ^ "Leaks, damaged cable cause of 4-hour delay on Circle Line". The Straits Times. 29 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011. 
  12. ^ "Thousands affected by Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 20 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011. 
  13. ^ "Faulty cable led to Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 20 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011. 
  14. ^ "Call for thorough probe on Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011. 
  15. ^ Tuas West Extension Groundbreaking Ceremony Speech (PDF) (Speech). Land Transport Authority. 4 May 2012. 
  17. ^ "LTA and SMRT Award Contracts for New Trains and Re-Signalling Project". Land Transport Authority. 1 February 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  18. ^ "Alstom to supply 34 Metropolis trains and signaling upgrade to Singapore metro". 3 February 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2013.